Harvest: Memories and Ghosts

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Sitting in the school’s Learning Garden while I wait for my running team to leak out from the doors, leaves me with a rare outdoor moment in the city. A time to reflect, catch my breath, and attempt to ease the tension in my body with yoga breaths. Thanksgiving brings about the powerful metaphor of Harvest: a time when the land offers up its bounty in the hope that it will be enough to see you through the long, dark Winter ahead.

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As a child the Harvest was a moment, a last hustle before the country snows set in to engulf our old farmhouse near the ocean. I vividly remember gathering the leftover potatoes from the farmer’s fields in the late dusk; they opened their fields to anyone who might benefit from the leftovers. Looking back, we needed those leftovers to get us through the Winter. In our clay basement we would stack the root vegetables (potatoes, carrots, rutabagas that we thought were turnips) in a wooden bin. This would be our store until late March when the potato grew eyes, the carrots went limp and that turnip was soggy. The vegetables today last a week while ours lasted months.

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The garden today is almost bare but for the kale and a few flowers. Leftover tomatoes are strewn on the ground by careless pickers who might not value them as I would. Though I am still tempted to collect these broken fruits, I am no longer the boy who needs to stoop for what others leave behind, but then again that may just well be who I really am and who I take comfort in being.

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On the photography front, Base Camp X has a a new piece that is just absolutely mind-bogglingly cool. Paderno will also sending more work my way this week. Time to dust off the mind and make a little magic in the light and shadows.

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